Does Your Nose Keep Growing After Rhinoplasty Surgery?

When deciding to get a nose job, naturally, you want to know how permanent your surgery will be. Although your bone stops growing at maturity, other factors influence your nose after rhinoplasty. While the results of a nose job are permanent, cosmetic surgery can’t stop the ageing process and certain situations that could affect your results. 

What is Rhinoplasty Surgery?

There are various techniques and approaches to rhinoplasty. Your surgeon will choose the correct approach for your case, depending on your concerns. The main techniques include open or closed rhinoplasty. A nose job can permanently alter the nose shape or size of the nose and offer the following benefits: 

Does Your Nose Keep Growing? 

Does Your Nose Keep Growing? Rhinoplasty

Your nose does stop growing at maturity. This is about 14 or 15 for girls and 15 or 16 for boys. But it’s not uncommon for your nose to continue to mature into your twenties with minor changes. While your bones stop growing, your nose cartilage continues to grow as you age. Because of that, some surgeons may refuse to operate on a person in their teens unless the operation is to correct an injury or a breathing issue. 

Your nose is made up mostly of cartilage. Cartilage is the connective tissue that allows bones to slide over each other; it’s tough and flexible. Even when cartilage continues to grow, you shouldn’t notice any significant changes. The changes that do occur take place over a long period. 

Like your nose, your ears also grow as you get older since they are also made of cartilage. Because of that, it’s common to see nasal tips droop in older patients or older people with larger ears and noses. Cosmetic surgery can’t control the ageing process. 

While the rest of the body appears to shrink as you get older, your ears and nose continue to grow. The cartilage divides more as you age, and the connective tissue gets weaker. Now, it sounds like your ears will continue to grow massively, but this isn’t the case. 

What is the Best Age to Get Rhinoplasty? 

When thinking about rhinoplasty, it’s natural to wonder whether you’re old enough to make changes to your nose or have waited too long to do it. There is no age limit to when you can get rhinoplasty. However, the most popular age for many people is between 20 and 29. The “best” age for a nose job depends on when you feel ready. Some people are ready at 25, while others feel ready in their 50s.

What are the Benefits of Getting a Nose Job? 

Your nose is central to your identity. That’s why the nose is sometimes referred to as the “fingerprint of the face.” The older you get, the more people around you become familiar with your appearance, your nose included. Therefore, the longer you wait to make changes to your nose, the more noticeable your nose job will be.

When you decide to get rhinoplasty is a personal choice. While there is no definite best age, between 180 and 40 is thought to be ideal. Getting a nose job can result in several benefits like improved sleep, reduction in snoring, a smaller nose, and even giving the nostrils a new shape.

Before and after rhinoplasty and alar base reduction at The Harley Clinic

Is Your Nose Job Permanent? 

It’s important to consider that although nose job results are permanent, unforeseen events can affect your nose, like injury or illness. In case of an accident or injury, contact your plastic surgeon to guide you on the best course of action. 

While a nose job is permanent, patients should consider the long-term results of rhinoplasty. A nose job shouldn’t just look good the following year. It should look amazing over time for years to come.  

Immediately following your surgery, you will have swelling and bruising. Your nose will continue to appear larger than it will look for a few weeks as the swelling continues to go down. It’s not until about one year after your surgery that the swelling will go down completely. 

After rhinoplasty, your nose won’t go back to its original state. Your plastic surgeon alters the bones and cartilage in the nose. A great plastic surgeon can craft consistent results that will stand the test of time. 

How Long Does It Take to Recover From Rhinoplasty?

When it comes to rhinoplasty recovery, every patient’s journey is unique. The amount of time it takes to recover and see the final results is influenced by factors like:

  • Your age
  • Overall health 
  • Skin thickness
  • The surgical technique used  
  • Your body’s swelling and bruising tendency 
  • Whether it’s a first rhinoplasty or a revision procedure
  • Whether you combined rhinoplasty with other procedures  

Generally, closed rhinoplasty recovery is shorter than if you had open rhinoplasty. At the same time, if you combine the procedure with other procedures like a neck lift or a facelift, expect the recovery to take longer. People who have revision rhinoplasty have a longer healing time than those having the surgery for the first time. There are several rhinoplasty swelling stages, and although the healing process can take up to a year, you can go back to your everyday life after three to four weeks.  

The first week following your procedure is the most uncomfortable and requires rest. It would help if you made plans beforehand to ensure that someone is handling your everyday activities as you recover. Ideally, it is recommended that you keep your head propped to minimise swelling and facilitate blood circulation. Usually, with rhinoplasty, the pain and discomfort aren’t much, but you can still use cold presses to minimise the swelling.   

During the first week, make sure that you don’t blow your nose or bend over. You also need to ensure that you steer clear of any activity that could put the nose in harm’s way. After your procedure, you may experience a lot of nose congestion, forcing you to breathe through your mouth. Therefore, your mouth and throat will be very dry. Follow all your surgeon’s post-operative instructions for cleaning and caring for the incisions. 

After 4 to 6 weeks, the swelling and bruising should have subsided, and you should feel comfortable returning to light activities. However, avoid strenuous activities and ensure that you are still sleeping on your back. 

You should also avoid putting any unnecessary pressure on your nose. The tip of your nose, especially, is still healing, and putting pressure on it could set you back on your recovery and may even affect the result of the procedure. 

So, when do you make a full recovery? With rhinoplasty, swelling can take a long time to resolve, especially if the procedure is very invasive. Your nose will undergo several changes in the months following your surgery as it settles into the new shape. Be patient, as it can take up to a year to see the final results. 

How to Get the Best Nose Job Results 

By following your surgeon’s pre and post-operative instructions, you put yourself in the best position for optimal recovery and great results. Avoid certain activities after rhinoplasty and follow your surgeon’s guidelines for your rhinoplasty recovery. While everyone has concerns over ageing, certain things are out of your control. Overall, any age-related growth is slow and takes years to notice. 

If you had rhinoplasty years ago and are now unhappy with your results, it’s good to seek expert advice from a Harley Street plastic surgeon. You may be a suitable candidate for a revision procedure. In some cases, a non-surgical or liquid nose job may help you achieve the results you want. A non-surgical nose job uses filler to add volume and improve the nose’s appearance. 

Although a liquid nose job doesn’t change the shape or structure of the nose, it can still have a huge impact on the overall look and balance of the face. If you have any concerns with breathing issues, a non-surgical nose job will not be the right solution as it only affects the appearance of your nose. Your nose job is permanent, but unexpected events can impact your results. You may go through experiences as you age that you can’t foresee. 

non-surgical rhinoplasty recovery - before and after - at the Harley Clinic

Factors That Affect How Your Rhinoplasty Changes With Age

There is no way of knowing how your rhinoplasty will look as the years go by. Although rhinoplasty results are permanent, certain factors can cause changes, and that’s why some will go back for revision rhinoplasty after a few years. These factors include the rhinoplasty technique used, trauma to the nose and face, skin thickness on your nose and genetics. Here is a breakdown of each:

Rhinoplasty Technique

Every surgeon has a unique technique through which they approach rhinoplasty procedures. That will affect how your rhinoplasty results change with age. Rhinoplasty is done inside your nose or through a small incision at the base of your nose; your surgeon will either re-adjust the cartilage or the bone underneath the skin. It all comes down to the expertise of your plastic surgeon. That’s why it’s important to find a highly qualified surgeon to do the procedure if you want the results to look as natural as possible as you age. 


Just like genetics play a role in the shape of your nose, they also affect how we age. For some people, there are little to no changes to their facial features as they age. Others go through significant changes that impact how their nose looks. 


Genetics results in subtle changes to your rhinoplasty results after a few decades. Trauma, however, can drastically change how your nose looks. Trauma after rhinoplasty may damage the cartilage, bones and tissues of the nose, drastically altering its appearance. Following trauma, your cartilage might grow back as scar tissue which continues to change the shape of your nose as you age.

Skin Thickness

The skin loses collagen as we age and becomes loose. If you already have thick skin on the nose, then the signs of ageing may show more than those with thinner skin. Thick skin rhinoplasty helps add cartilage to the nose to add definition. That means your nose will be more pronounced even though your skin may change.   

Your nose job is permanent, and the first step in rhinoplasty is choosing the best plastic surgeon who has experience using the most advanced surgical techniques. Second, making good lifestyle changes helps to prevent premature ageing.   

Avoiding smoking and limiting sunlight exposure are also ways of slowing down ageing. However, if your rhinoplasty is not performed well, making lifestyle changes won’t delay the inevitable. You will have to go back for revision surgery at some point since the initial job affects how your rhinoplasty ages. 

Will My Nose Change as I Get Older if I Get a Rhinoplasty When I’m Younger?

Generally, rhinoplasty results hold up well over time. Once the swelling has gone down, which usually takes about a year, the final results should be visible and look the same for many years. Getting a nose job when young doesn’t stop the ageing process. Your nose will still go through changes as you get older. This is because the cartilage and soft tissues supporting the nose weaken over time, resulting in nasal widening and dropping. These changes are more noticeable in some people than others. 

Rhinoplasty Before and After 

Before and after nose job revision rhinoplasty at the Harley Clinic

Rhinoplasty Procedure at Harley Clinic: Best Rhinoplasty Surgeon, UK

To get the best rhinoplasty results, choose a qualified, experienced and expert plastic surgeon. Your doctor should have plenty of experience within their field and make you feel comfortable and at ease. 

Check your surgeon’s rhinoplasty before and after pictures to decide if they are the right fit for you. Deciding to undergo any cosmetic surgery is a big decision, so choosing the right plastic surgeon is the most crucial step. 

If you’re considering rhinoplasty, book a consultation today to discuss your options. 

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